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This is real interesting. Please read.



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Home > FAU Sports

Revisiting recruiting strategy
By Marcus Nelson | Thursday, February 7, 2008, 10:02 PM



Here’s some follow-up thoughts after Wednesday’s National Signing Day and the even more momentous National First-Sun-Belt-Road-Win Day.


While overall it appears FAU had a solid recruiting class, the expectations that the Owls would begin beating traditional powers on a regular basis this year never materialized.

And with that, Owls coach Howard Schnellenberger hinted at some possible changes in recruiting strategy for next season.

Here’s what he had to say.

“I don’t want to take anything away from this class. This class was outstanding and the best we’ve ever had, but we’re not competing with the very top-of-the line Miamis, Floridas, Florida States, Penn States and Ohio States.

And the reason why we’re not is those damn early commitments. People are offering these guys scholarships without even coming on their campus sometimes. All that’s doing is leading to a bunch of heartache for a lot of people. And it’s causing us heartache because we’re haven’t done that. I’m hard-pressed to think I’ll ever do it, but I’ve got to do something so we can get a chance. We have to get a chance to get them on a visit and our coaches can talk to them and show film and get them to come to a game.

It’s not because we’re any less of recruiters we’ve always been, it’s just a different ball-game out there.” I think that’s pretty telling and shows there were some very high-hopes for this year’s class. There appears to be a bit of frustration major steps weren’t taken by making this the year several recruits turned down major programs to come to FAU.


The Owls did bring in two Division I-A transfers in the signing class, which should pay off.

Defensive linemen Kevin Cyrille, a graduate of North Miami Beach, will transfer from Western Michigan and A.J. Johnson will come from UConn after graduating from Cardinal Gibbons.

NCAA transfer rules dictate players who transfer to a Division I-A team have to sit out a year, but FAU coach Kurt Van Valkenburgh, who is the de facto player personnel director if college’s had that position, said that there is a good chance the NCAA will allow Johnson to play next season. Johnson left UConn before pre-season practice began to provide care for his elderly father and the NCAA does have a history of a waiver of the transfer rule in such cases.


One sign the Owls are making progress is the amount of new schools which are sending players to FAU for the first time, including Hollywood Hills and schools in Daytona Beach and the Pensacola area.

Schnellenberger is still concentrating on the FAU Territory - the line from Tampa to Orlando and south - but the area could be expanding a bit.




FAU - THE REAL SLEEPING GIANT
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Re: Latest Marcus Nelson post

interesting article. I'm glad to see Howard is willing to change rather then saying this is how I do it and I'm not changing. He didn't knock this year class which is important but at least he realizes he maybe needs to catch up with the times.

My two favorite teams are FAU, and who ever is beating FIU!
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i agree
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Jab979 said

interesting article. I'm glad to see Howard is willing to change rather then saying this is how I do it and I'm not changing. He didn't knock this year class which is important but at least he realizes he maybe needs to catch up with the times.

No offense to Schnellenberger or to the tremendous strides that we've taken at FAU, but there's more to the recruit's decision of FAU over, say, Miami than just the possibility of early commitment or not.

FAU needs to pursue the local four and five star guys even if they don't think they have a chance at them. Who knows? A lot of Florida schools are getting great recruits who just wanted to be closer to home.

Furthermore, we have openings from 2009 on. They need to have at least one mid-major team (like Central Michigan) and one major team (Auburn, Alabama, Penn State, West Virginia) on the schedule every year. A win over the mid-major team would earn the SBC more respect and a win over the major team would be a tremendous upset/rankings boost for the school. A loss may happen but for recruits, knowing you're going to play against a team like Auburn even when you're at FAU helps.

I think the Class of 2009 will be the class we expected this year… especially if we win a better bowl or find a way to carve out a W against Texas and Michigan State. Those people will redshirt Fall '09 and be the first class to play in the stadium come 2010. The pitch should be much better next year and the results should show that.






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